In 2008, Lani was in the midst of starting her own non-profit animal shelter for homeless and neglected pets. This had been her lifelong dream and was finally coming true. Although Lani was excited about her new endeavor, she had been very tired for many years. After seeing several doctors with all of her blood work coming back normal, she assumed there was nothing wrong and pushed through her days as best as she could. Then one day she got a mysterious pain in one of her legs that progressed daily until she ended up in a wheelchair. After months of medical testing she was diagnosed with incurable stage 4 Follicular Lymphoma, a blood cancer that she had had for many years. Lani underwent 6 months of a chemotherapy called R-CHOP, that put her into a complete remission for 6 years. In May 2015, when Lani had finally put her cancer behind her, she got an old familiar pain in her leg once again. This time her Follicular Lymphoma had transformed into a more aggressive form of Non-Hodgkinâ€™s Lymphoma called Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma (DLBC). This time she went from walking normally to being confined to a wheelchair within 1 month. Doctors are hoping that the chemotherapy will work and that, in time, the bone will heal itself and sheâ€™ll be able to walk again soon. The treatment for transformed Lymphoma requires much more intense chemotherapy followed by an autologous stem cell transplant. Lani chose City of Hope in Southern California to have her transplant. She will no longer have insurance coverage and will have expenses up to $11,000 a year. The entire process will take approximately 4 months. During this time, Lani has had to temporarily uproot her life and move out of state, living out of a suitcase. Her biggest challenge, so far, has been finding affordable housing for those 4 months. She has not been able to find anyone willing to rent their home for less than a year. The hotels are not affordable for that long of a time period nor is a hotel conducive to a clean or healing environment when going through such harsh cancer treatments. Lani is hopeful that her treatment at the City of Hope hospital will go well and that her cancer will, once again, be behind her so that she can go back to leading a normal life. She would love to finish her dream of opening an animal shelter for the thousands of animals who need her help. She is also looking forward to becoming a hospice volunteer once this cancer is just a blip in her rear-view mirror.
The Bone Marrow Foundation relies 100% on private donations. Your generous Lifeline Fund donation will make a significant difference in the lives of patients like Lani.